Why Cheap Air Filters Won't Do The Job If You Have Pets

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f you're a pet owner with allergies, you know what it's like to pit your immune system against your love of your furry companions.

Three in ten people have pet allergies, but that doesn't stop 68% of American households from owning pets. To live beside their animal friends, allergy sufferers must take extra precautions. 

Pet ownership comes with extra cleaning and sanitizing to keep everyone healthy. Those with pet allergies are susceptible to animal dander in their air, which can trigger asthma attacks. Air filters can reduce dander in the home, but most people don't know the difference between cheap air filters and quality ones.

Is your air filter protecting your family against pet dander? Read on to find out why low-quality filters don't do the job in homes with pets. 

Cheap Air Filters Have Low MERV

All air filters have a "minimum efficiency reporting value," or MERV. This rating tells consumers how small of a particulate size is filtered out of the air. The higher MERV value your filter has, the better job it can do filtering out small animal dander particles

Recommended MERV filter ratings for effective pet dander control is 10 or higher. A standard, cheap filter ranks between 1-4 on the MERV scale. These low-rated fiberglass filters might be fine for capturing pollen and dust mites, but small dander particles will continue to pass right through. 

Filter Thickness Matters

Even if your filter has a high MERV value, it might not be the best choice for pet dander. You want to use filters that are 4-5 inches thick, in addition to a MERV rating of 10 or higher.

High-MERV filters can make your HVAC system work harder to pass air through. High-quality allergen filters will be thick, creating more air space within the filter. This extra filter material allows more dust and particulate to be caught within it before it fills up and needs a change.

Thin filters have less surface area to catch particles. Though they may have a high filter density, they have limited space with which to trap dander and contaminants. You'll need to replace the filter far more often, which is not economical over time.

All Filters Need Maintenance

Regardless of your filter choice, pet hair and dander will clog your filters more frequently. It is important to schedule routine filter cleaning and replacement. Pet owners can expect to change filters every 4-6 weeks.

A dirty filter will make your HVAC system suffer more resistance to push air through the ducts. This wastes energy, money, and taxes the system in your home. 

Besides replacing filters more often, keep your system in top shape with regular professional cleanings and maintenance

Get Professional Help

No one should have to give up their furry family members due to pet allergies. While you may never be 100% free of animal dander in the home, diligent care and maintenance will lower your risk of allergy symptoms. Upgrading those cheap air filters will make a significant difference in your air quality.

Want help with how to keep your home as allergen-free as possible? The experts at 4 Seasons Air Conditioning & Heating can help you determine what quality solutions are best for your needs.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation. We can help upgrade your existing system, and even have options for whole-home air purifier installations. You'll be breathing a little easier in no time.